The Pope welcomed a gathering of altar servers in Rome. As John Allen notes: 

First, for the first time this year, the female altar servers in attendance outnumbered the males. According to organizers, the balance was roughly 60-40 in favor of females. The official Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, pointed to the turnout as a symbol of “the massive entry in recent decades of girls and young women into a role once reserved exclusively to males.” 

This predominance of girls was predictable (anyway I predicted it in my book The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity). Western Christianity has for a long time been regarded as unmasculine. It has been difficult to keep men, especially young men, connected to a church which seems to want to lessen their masculinity.


If an activity is obviously and mistakably masculine (such as soldiering), opening it to women does not make it a part of the feminine sphere. But if a sphere is already regarded as feminine (and Western Christianity is), opening an activity within it to women will make that activity a feminine activity.


The 60-40 split in altar servers mirrors the female-male split in Catholic church attendance. As boys are busy establishing their masculinity at that age, I suspect that the proportion of boy altar servers will decline further.


In many mainline Protestant churches, including the Evangelical church in Germany, women are already the majority of seminarians, and the clergy is being converted into a feminine occupation, like nursing. There are male nurses, but they are rare, and someday we willl have to say male minister, as we now say male nurse.


To further increase men’s suspicions about Christianity, in some denominations, such as the Episcopal, the remaining men are often homosexual. The heterosexual, male minister will be a rara avis in the not too distant future in the more liberal denominations.

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